Mark, why am I here, he is so different, a country boy who hunts, spits, and is so opposite of me, my style, eats food that made me want to barf! The one part that made me really fall for this man was a crazy terrifying story. I had to go to the bank and for some reason I needed a vehicle, but I cant remember why. He handed me his keys to his beautiful brand new hot red pick up truck and said “Here take this!” I gladly drove it. I pulled into the bank coming up to the window, I scraped that big yellow pole right on the side of his big beautiful red truck. All I remember was the fear that ran through my body and the voice in my head telling me, “Don’t go back because he was going to kill me.” It literally took me after one hour of sitting and thinking to get up enough courage to go to his home, and show him what had just happened to his beautiful new truck. Finally I entered into the home, he immediately was eye to eye with me, he must have saw in my face that something terrible was wrong , because he got up came over to me, hugged me, and ask “Are you OK?’ I pulled enough courage up and told him what happened. All he did what take my hand, gave me a hug and said “Lets go see it.”No yelling, no hitting, not even did a bad name of me come out of his mouth, he only said ” I am glad your OK, and this is what insurance is for.” I could not believe that was all he had to say. I was not use to this kind of man. I knew I had to keep him. I cleaned the home, I cooked, and every day that past, he always showed love, so I did more, became more closer, more dependent, willing to change anything he wanted me to. I was willing to do anything to keep this man. Something bad was happening in me, I was so pushy on trying to make him love me, I didn’t realize how I started to push him away. Before I knew it, I was sounding like my mom, just tell me you love me once in a while. One night, he was actually willing to let me leave, so I did. I went to a friends house, told her what was happening, cried to her, but was putting my tough girl act on, thinking fine, ill go back to Connecticut. I knew I wasn’t staying with my parents even though dad through the program was changing. I wasn’t taking that chance. After a while my friend asked ” Do you want him?” I answered “Yes!” she immediately took me and said, “Then go stand up for yourself and tell him what you feel.” As we headed to the home, I was mapping it all in my head on what to say . I walked into the home, got him from bed and we talked. All I remember of that night was us asking if we wanted to see each other with someone else. We both said “NO!” back together we were. As time passed we grew closer and ended up buying a home together but still were not married. Things were good. where we moved right next to us was a couple who ended up being a youth Pastor and his wife who I befriended and of course gave me an invite to their church. I was excited to go, but of course my boyfriend wasn’t ready for that so I went a Sunday on my own. I will never forget that Sunday. I walked into that church, people I never met walked up to me with open arms, giving me a hug, telling me “Welcome!”, hugging me more. At first I was thinking that the hugging , touching thing wasn’t a good sign. I was afraid! As the service went on, something inside me was happening, I was becoming a ball of mess, I wanted what these people had in them, I wanted to feel this Jesus they were talking about, I was longing for this kind of love they talked about all my life. I wanted to belong, what in the world was happening to me. I have always been able to hide my emotions, why was I falling apart? The next thing I knew, I ran to that altar pleading for this Jesus to enter my heart, begging Him to change my life and make it good. I wanted to be happy like these people. After the service was over I couldn’t wait to go tell Mark what happen, and wondered if he would think me crazy. I didn’t care, I had to tell him. I went home and did tell him, but no excitement, no coming to church with me. The only thing he promised was after a couple weeks of me going, I was scheduled to be baptized and he did promise to go to support me. It was amazing all the way until the day of my baptism no plans were made, I was excited he was coming, but then it happened, a call from his friends asking him to go to the card game. He was ready to say yes, but looked at me remembering his promise and told his friends, “I can’t I promised Yolonda I would go to her baptism tonight.” I couldn’t believe it, he chose me over his friend, no one ever chose me first, not my mother, not my biological father, not anyone, but he did! God moved that night at my baptism, my wonderful boyfriend decided to give his heart to Jesus that night. Together our lives started to change. A new journey, a new walk. I finally felt happy for a change. Life looked good!
I was so tired of my life, tired of looking for love in all the wrong places, tired of feeling alone. I was done, but how do I change this? It was time to go! Yelled out to GOD, Help me get out of here! more time passed nothing. One day at work I met this new girl named Kim, a beautiful red head, we hit it off. One day I invited her over she came and soon learned how I was living and all I was dealing with. Yep, he tried to get her to sleep with him too. Kim was strong, she was as powerful as that red hair of hers. She told me I needed to move, get out, make a change as soon as possible! How, where do I go? Out of the blue one day I get a call, and to my surprise it was my mother, I was in total shock. She told me they had moved to the state of Virginia and dad/the boogieman has changed, he is now in a program called AA/NA and they wanted me to come and talk with them. I didn’t know what to think, maybe I was being set up, why would she call me like that. I responded “OK!” no matter how tough I tried to be with her, or how much I wanted to hate her. I still loved and missed my mom. I went to visit them and surprisingly they invited my boy friend to come too. I asked my mom why? “She said because she loved me and missed me!” words my whole life I had been waiting to hear, but wondered is she telling the truth. We went on the visit and yes, he came with me to ensure my return. While visiting, it was strange. Mom asked me that night to go to a meeting with her, I agreed, it was a meeting for families who had people in recovery. Inside I was laughing, where has she taken me. I cant even tell what they talked about that night, I was so out of it. One thing that struck me was, The boogieman really seemed to be going out of his way to be nice. Why????After few days we went back home, things became worse. It was for the first time in my life, I felt no hope. I wanted to just end my life. All that was said about me was true, I was nothing, worthless,a whore, going no where fast. One night the beating from my boyfriend was so bad, that I escaped the house after he choked me. I ran, hid in the bushes until the police came. Because of the marks left on my neck from him trying to choke me, they took him away to the police department. I immediately called Kim who came helped me get my stuff and headed to the only place I could, Virginia, where mom and dad the boogieman were. I was scared, the entire time on the drive. I was actually going to moms, was I crazy? What am I thinking? The drive became dark and extremely long, I felt like I was in a horror movie. Just as we crossed the line into Maryland up on the side of us was a car serving into us trying to push us off to the side. I couldn’t believe it, it was my boyfriend. He was telling us to pull over. Kim said what do I do? I told her to pull over, it wasn’t worth her getting killed, she refused, but he came so close to the car, it terrified her too. I don’t know why, or how, but after talking with him he let me go. He didn’t hurt me. What, how, why? We continued to my parents home. That night. I was taken to a meeting, a meeting that changed my life forever, an AA/NA open meeting where as soon as I sat down with Kim, there he was, my at the time didn’t know it. Husband. Some might call it jumping from the pan into the fire. That night after the meeting my mom called a card game at her house and everyone came. It was the first time in a long time I was happy, smiling, having a good time. That night I was invited to go four wheeling with my future, yep I went, and it was great. I couldn’t stop thinking of him. I did the unthinkable, went to his home and spent the entire night with him. In my mind I thought I would return back north to my job. I clearly was not thinking. The next night right after I was dropped back off at my parents, my boyfriend who i was escaping from shows up, trying his best to get me to leave with him. He was promising me the world, but it was too late, I no longer wanted him, what I felt for him was gone. I now had this other man in my mind who I could not get his face out of mind at all, and the memory of the night with him that I knew, I wanted another one like it. I really believe God was with me, because he left. He tried a few more time getting me back, but finally stopped. I never looked back. In fact my future Hubby Mark made sure, he personally drove me to Connecticut to pick up all my items and brought to my home where to this day I am still living. I never lived with mom and dad, yep, I moved in with Mark, and the journey in Virginia begins!
I came to a point in life at 18, I met a man and at first it was amazing. I actually thought he was the one. Took me off the streets, was 12 years older then me and yep, he was black. I actually thought all white men at this point were abusive pigs, so I decided to do something I knew would cause a riff with my family. Especially with dad/boogieman who was a KKK member. It sure did, it made my step dad and his friends cringe, he actually would not allow my mom to speak to me. For almost 2 years I was alienated from all my family, but did not care, at least I thought I didn’t. The change after 2 years in this man I took a chance with, flipped on me, I found out, no matter the race, a bad man came in all shapes,colors, and sizes. I stayed with him because in my mind I was thinking, like always, it’s not my dad, I have a roof over my head, so deal with it. This relationship became bad and violent, but no one would ever know, after playing the game. With the psychiatric ward, I learned to hide it all! During our almost seven year relationship, I allowed him such power that I became as pathetic as I felt my mom was. For the length of our relationship he had been dating another woman who was as pathetic as me. He brought her to the house, one time he was even dating her sister. I just kept repeating in my head, deal with it, it’s not dad, uncle, or grandpa. It was never easy. His control over both of us was amazing, he would sleep with both of us at the same time. If we cried, he would strike us, and we both submitted to him as if he was a king. Instead of being angry at him, we hated each other, challenged each other to see who would win in the end. I wanted it to end, and the girl he was dating would never leave him. She was totally in love with him. It’s amazing how women will hate each other over a man. We sang in a group together , I was the lead female vocalist and he was the lead male. it never failed when we would play out, his girlfriend would show up, but I still had to keep it together to perform,or the punishment would be severe. She was so determined to win him, as was I. After all it was my home,I came first! I was not going back to the streets. He would tell me ” Its you, your my main mamma, shes just a thing to have fun with you with!” I truly felt like his controlled whore! A dog on his leash, caged. At about six years into it, I started to become mouthy with him. It came to a point he would smack my face and it was like I couldn’t feel it anymore, so I would lash out again telling him, its over, I’m done. At one point he almost choked the life out of me, and said “I will kill you before I let you leave.” I believed him. I stopped and shut my mouth. I was so tired, I was planning my escape. I had to, it was not worth the beatings anymore. I called an aunt who I was close with when I was younger up until she married her first husband who was one of my molesters. She was the only place that I tried to call, where I was working at, so did she. She had remarried and her new husband seemed nice, so I took a chance went to her at work, told her my situation and she let me in. That night I planned my escape, grabbed what I could and left to her home, with the understanding he could never know where she lived. I did it, but didn’t think it all out because he showed up at my job demanding me to come home, I did my best to avoid him, but he always found a way, his last words to me was “Either come home, or I will find out where you are and will kill them and you!” with such fear inside I did the unthinkable and went back. My aunt was so mad, I was never to call her again for help. For a little while it was good. He actually bought me a $7000.00 diamond ring asking me to marry him, but then he in time was back to himself and yes, he was still dating her. At this point we were together 6 years, and he had been with her now for 5 years. I kept my mouth shut, but this time was making a better plan of escape. I was clueless on what to do. At one point I cant even remember when , or how y sisters and I found each other and they came over. He actually tried to get my middle sister who was a stripper in a club to sleep with him, but she came and said you need to get out of this now! I cried, but said I” I didn’t know how, but I wanted to.” My sister knew, she understood. She was having her own struggles with drugs and alcohol, ended up getting arrested and going to prison. I went to see her, she was detoxing so bad, was down to eighty pounds in weight, asking me to help her get out. It scared me so bad, drugs and me were enemies because of what they did to her. I stuck only to drinking, just to buzz enough that when his girlfriend would come over I could get through his sick fantasy. I had to get out!!!! It was no longer going through my head at least its not dad. I didn’t want sick men anymore, period ,touching me!
After graduating it seemed to go down hill from there. I don’t remember why, or what happened to mamma , all I know the days of working were long and tiring, and the nights in the car were cold and so lonely, many nights I cried myself to sleep always wondering why me? My mom always told people that at my birth I was born with the vale on, she would say “The doctor who delivered me in all his years of being a doctor never had such a birth, I was born with the vale on which had a saying of such a birth was special.” I always wondered with such a crazy life as mine what was so special, or did it really mean I was destined for a life of hell in which I was truly living. It was crazy though, I never really wanted to die because I really was convinced that if I could reach the end of the rainbow I would get the pot of gold. One gift God had given to me was the gift to sing, when things got really, really bad I would always go to my car turn the radio on and blast it, it never failed no matter what I was feeling a song always seemed to come on that would hit to what exactly I was feeling and I would sing, sing, and sing. I like many dreamed of becoming a singer, My mother was a singer, a good singer, but would not let me pursue that dream. I believed in my heart its because she let her dream go because of a man, my biological father. My Nona told me until she met him, there was a contract ready for her signature for stardom, but my dad would not allow it. For what seemed like forever I went from man to man, did what I needed for food, a warm place to sleep. I would meet and it lasted for a while until another girl turned their eyes and yep, over, out, back to the streets, but again it wasn’t family members so it was easy and I was in control of who I slept with and if I wanted it to stop. I was judged, called a whore by family and whoever. I tried to tell myself I didn’t care, but I cried constantly. Is this all life had to offer me, would I ever get that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, or was I living in la la land was always questions in my mind, there were times I asked God to just let me die. It never failed, a song would play and somehow my feelings calmed down and I would get through that day.
I was able to always maintain a job, had money but not enough to support myself. The shattered pieces of the past as I write my story are becoming so real that I had to stop writing for a couple of days because the emotions are so over whelming and the memories that are popping back in, they are still so painful as if it were yesterday! After getting kicked out and being in my car, still in school at some point I remember meeting this woman whose name I cant Remember she was a sweet beautiful black woman, I called her mamma. I could not understand why dad hated black people so much, Mamma was so sweet. Even though I was a run away she never asked questions, she took me to her home, fed me and let stay with her. When I think back about her, today I really believe she was an earthly Angel God sent to feed, and love me. It was because of her after summer was over, I went to school. One night I remember the police coming to the home, they were looking for me. I was so scared, I thought they were there to take me back to the boogieman.I honestly believe the cop saw my fear and actually gave mamma the help to keep me. He said and I’ll never forget it ” In the state of Connecticut because she is now 17 we can not force her to go home if she has a roof over her head.” Mamma looked at him and said “This is her home!” they left, I was so happy for the first. I never had to see the boogieman again in my bedroom. Mamma’s only request was that I finished high school. It was my last year, there was a teacher there who too, I felt was an Angel always made me feel smart, always made me feel I could do anything. between him and Mamma I not only graduated, but I did it in the top ten. Some people always found the humor in trying to knock me down because it was an alternative school, they would tease with their two sided-double edge sword tongues that the school only had 10 people, lol, it wasn’t funny then. I wanted to graduate because dad and moms words always to us kids was “We would never finish,” I wanted to finish so I could send an invitation to my graduation as a slap in their faces to say hahaha, I graduated! I did send the invitation. After the graduation, I have no memory of what happen , or where mamma went. I was out of school and back sleeping in my car, but I did have a job, I would go to the Y when I needed a shower. Why did mamma disappear to this day is a question I can not answer, all I feel was my Angel went back to heaven!
I came to a point in life at 17, I met a man and at first it was amazing. I actually thought he was the one. Took me off the streets, was about 10 years older then me , I met him at work, Like every relationship, the start was beautiful. I don’t know why I went with men so much older then me, but I did not realizing then, it seemed, I was readable and always managed to find those men who loved to control, and I was willing for what I thought was love, let them have full control. The things I was willing to deal with and do for a love of a man left me feeling broken and stuck. After all, as long as it wasn’t a relative, this was easier to deal with. for 3-4 years in this relationship, I allowed him sick control to the point his beatings seemed at time much worse then my fathers. One night the beating was so bad, all I remember was grabbing a pan and swinging it, and the next thing I knew I was out in the street. The door was locked. I was never let back in. Spent so many nights after this sleeping in my car. At least I had a job and could keep gas in the car so I could keep it running so I could stay warm. I had joined the Navy during high school and was in the delayed enlistment program and I remember going, but was honorably discharged because I was in a psychiatric award prior to leaving which caused a problem. I was honorably discharged, but I was angry because I didn’t do nothing, it was done to me, but in order for me to stay, it meant more doctors to see if my mental was OK. After the hospital, I trusted no head person again and would not agree to more evaluations, I was in fear of a trigger that would put me away permanently. the anger inside was real, it wanted to hurt/ kill those who hurt me. I couldn’t let them release that demon. it was back to my car and streets. Broken, confused, scared and alone seemed to be my new best friends.
Confusion, pain, people who never had confidence, compassion, the care to speak up, fight for, defend, love and honor are what seemed to surround my life. I spent so many days trying to hide from dads temper, out bursts, and mom running after him always with the same words ” I don’t ask you for anything except to tell me you love me once in awhile!” Pathetic, was the word that came to my mind, but then I would cry for her. Inside I would scream out, I will never be like you, never! The reality was, I was. After I was released from the psychiatric ward! That night I packed my bags and ran, he was not coming to my room anymore, I was done with mom and the boogie man/dad. I was able to survive, a lot of memory of the streets, I’ve blocked/forgotten so much. I won’t lie, I did what I felt necessary to survive, and like mom, tried to find someone to love me, after all, I learned, you give a man what he wants, he’ll treat you good. I actually thought if I was really good to a man, kept myself looking good, he would never leave me. I learned quick, that was not true.